The Royal Mint, the Original Maker of UK coins, has today launched a commemorative coin celebrating the career of one of Britain’s most enduring musical icons – David Bowie.
It is the first time that a UK coin has been sent into space, and celebrates the intergalactic legacy of David Bowie and his hits including Starman, Life on Mars? and Space Oddity. The coin reached 35,656m and orbited the Earth’s atmosphere for 45 minutes before safely descending back to Britain.
The David Bowie commemorative coin is the third in The Royal Mint’s ‘Music Legends’ collection, and follows coins in honour of Queen and Elton John. The latest coin celebrates rock’s definitive chameleon with a design inspired by an image of David Bowie from his time spent living and recording in Berlin. The coin’s design includes the iconic lightning bolt motif from Aladdin Sane, and captures Bowie’s career journey.
Using the latest innovative technology and manufacturing techniques, the lightning bolt that features on a number of the special edition coins appears laced with stardust to create a glitter effect – elevating the stunning detail of the coin.
Clare Maclennan, Divisional Director of Commemorative Coin at The Royal Mint said, “We are thrilled to unveil the third coin in The Royal Mint’s ‘Music Legends’ series, honouring the intergalactic legacy and career of David Bowie. In recognition of Bowie’s first hit single ‘Space Oddity’, we felt it was fitting to send his coin into space and celebrate the Starman in his own pioneering fashion. David Bowie’s music has inspired and influenced generations of musicians and we hope this commemorative coin will be cherished by fans around the world.”
Born in Brixton, South London in 1947, Bowie started life as David Robert Jones. By the time he was 19 he had taken on his iconic name and began pursuing a career in pop music. Five days ahead of the Apollo 11 launch in July 1969, ‘Space Oddity’ was released in the United Kingdom. The single reached number five in the charts, making it Bowie’s first success as a writer and performer. David Bowie’s influence can be seen and heard everywhere and he continues to inspire hundreds of millions of musicians worldwide.
Available as limited-edition precious metal Proof editions and a standard Brilliant Uncirculated edition, the Brilliant Uncirculated coin is also available in three different slipcase covers exclusive to The Royal Mint – a fitting tribute to the career of one of British music’s most enduring icons.